Tips for Cooking without a Kitchen

by Michele Pesula Kuegler | November 28th, 2016 | Cooking Basics

a-handheld-can-openerSometimes things in life align just perfectly. For example, the day after we brought our daughter to college and officially became empty nesters, a week’s worth of travel for work fell into our laps. Having a week on the road, avoiding the quietness of our home, was truly welcomed.

And sometimes things in life are about misaligned as can be. In August I made the decision to downsize PeKu to only one publication- written, edited, and overseen by yours truly. At the same time we put our oversized house on the market. Throughout September I began to create a plan for what PeKu would be and awaited semi-patiently for an offer on our home. In October, I decided to build Think Tasty as a food blog that featured my food, my life, and me. That same month we received an offer on our home with a closing date of November 7th. We found the perfect place to relocate. . . that would be ready December 7th. So, my husband and I are living in a hotel for a month, without a stove. Perhaps not the ideal time to begin working on a food blog in earnest.

I did a little bit of advance work, but I also decided to try at least one week of recipes from my hotel. A good number of my friends and family do wonder about my sanity- cooking with just a microwave? However, I can’t imagine eating out every night. Not only do I miss working in a kitchen, I also miss eating the way I like to eat. So, over the past weeks I’ve made a couple dishes. Before we get into those recipes later this week, I have some helpful hints. These hints don’t just apply to a long-term hotel stay. Nope, they’d be useful while living in a college dorm or during a kitchen remodel at home, among others.

To make your kitchen-less cooking even better, check out my newly embraced ideas:

  • Rotisserie chicken is your friend- Buy a bag of salad mix or some rolls/wraps, and you can have salad or sub night.
  • Buy pre-seasoned ingredients. You won’t have a spice rack at your fingertips; go ahead and purchase Italian-seasoned tomatoes.
  • Eat vegetarian. Cooking meat with a microwave probably won’t go well. However, most veggies do pretty well, as do canned legumes.
  • Bring a can opener. Yeah, I didn’t, but my hotel has been kind enough to let me borrow theirs.
  • Bring a crockpot. Knowing now what I didn’t two weeks ago, I would’ve brought my crockpot. I could have made easy pulled pork or soup.

By the time this publishes we’ll be just a bit over week away from moving into our new home. I’m sure I’ll be deep into kitchen withdrawal but may have a few more hints. Be sure to check the comments for more insightful ideas from me.

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